Life at Wellingborough
Pastoral Care is central to our philosophy; at each level pupils have a safety net. The personal welfare of pupils revolves around our House system. This arrangement is unique in that almost no other co-educational Day School in the UK has a single-sex pastoral structure. Pupils testify to its success and the pride in one’s House is palpable.
Every House has its own character, colour and charity, and is led by a Housemaster or Housemistress; there are 4 boys’ Houses and 3 girls’ Houses in the Senior School. Pupils are allocated a House when they enter the School. Year 9’s upwards are based entirely in their House, whilst the Year 7 & 8 pupils are initially based in separate Year Group areas, under Heads of Year.
Each House and Year Group area has its own dedicated building with locker, meeting and social facilities and these have been upgraded in the last three years as part of a deliberate on-going process. Tutor groups have on average around 12 pupils in them from Year 9 onwards. New pupils are helped to integrate through support from the School Prefect Pupil Leads and the House Prefects. Tutors meet their tutees daily and there are weekly Tutor sessions and 1-to-1 meetings to discuss topical issues and pupil’s progress. A weekly House assembly is held where the whole House comes together.
The House system provides close pastoral support, but also give a sense of identity to each of the pupils who generally strive hard to earn their House colours; earning academic commendations and competing in events which range from sports to quizzes, dodgeball, charity shows, debating, drama and music. Though pupils compete in House teams and meet within their House group, they also develop life-long friendships throughout the Senior School; good friends can be fierce rivals when they meet in key House finals.
The School has a Wellbeing Team and counselling service, which are designed to complement the strengths of the pastoral system, provide an opportunity for pupils to address their concerns in a calm and neutral environment. We place wellbeing at the heart of our school, providing excellent mental health support, understanding and intervention. The award-winning Wellbeing Team offers guidance and support to pupils and their families. They recognise that change is difficult and work with the wider pastoral team to gain an in-depth understanding, to ensure every pupil feels supported as they integrate and transition into or up through the School.
Pupils have an extremely strong sense of how to stay safe and healthy. They clearly understand the importance of maintaining a balance lifestyle, including the value of a healthy diet and how to maintain a positive outlook. During the periods of remote learning pupils commented that they benefited from the willingness of staff to check regularly on their well-being. Pupils are highly sensitive to their own mental health needs and feel greatly supported by the work of the schools’ well-being centre and the willingness of the senior leaders and governors to invest in these resources to support pupils’ mental health.
ISI Inspection, March 2022